Make Sure That Your Advertising Is Working

Make Sure That Your Advertising Is Working

Make Sure That Your Advertising is​ Working
As a​ small business owner, every dollar you spend is​ a​ dollar that comes right out of​ your pocket and​ affects your profit margin, especially when youre trying to​ grow your business. if​ youre going to​ succeed, you have to​ pay close attention to​ your bottom line and​ look for​ creative, innovative ways to​ cut costs while still getting what you need.
That old saying that it​ takes money to​ make money has never been truer than when it​ comes to​ promoting your business.
So when it​ comes to​ spending money on advertising, how do you make sure that your advertising is​ working hard enough, without spending a​ fortune?
Thanks to​ the​ Internet, youve got lots of​ options for​ finding costeffective advertising that does what its supposed to​ bring targeted customers who are hungry for​ what youre selling, right to​ your door. But dont forget about costeffective offline methods as​ well.
Here are a​ few ideas to​ help you get started
Focus your advertising dollars on your target market. the​ tighter your niche, the​ better your chances of​ finding the​ customers who are looking for​ exactly what youve got to​ sell! So rather than going wide, and​ trying to​ sell to​ everyone, narrow your focus, and​ then, if​ possible, narrow it​ some more! Figure out who your ideal customer is, and​ then create an advertising campaign for​ them. Once you know who youre selling to, look for​ media that targets that demographic. Depending on your product or​ service, think community and​ neighborhood newspapers, high school sponsor advertising, chamber of​ commerce directories, etc.
If your ideal customers arent defined by a​ specific geographic location, look at​ regional or​ specific demographic publications. Perhaps a​ regional paper runs an annual issue that focuses on an issue or​ activity that reaches your target market. Use local cable television to​ broadcast your ads only in​ certain markets. Youll get cheaper rates and​ a​ more focused demographic.
Always ask for​ a​ discounted rate. Many publications offer an agency discount of​ up to​ 15 percent. if​ you are acting as​ your own inhouse advertising agency, you might qualify for​ the​ special rate.
Some monthly magazines offer discounts for​ multiads placed over a​ 3, 6 or​ 12 month time period. Most publications have a​ different rate schedule for​ different types of​ advertisers so depending on your product or​ service, you could qualify. and​ if​ not, sometimes just asking for​ the​ discount will give it​ to​ you.
Buy leftover space or​ airtime. This is​ advertising that the​ publication, radio or​ television station hasnt filled by their usual deadline. of​ course youll have to​ take the​ spots that are available, but again, depending on your business and​ the​ product or​ service youre selling, that inconvenience could still be worth the​ discount and​ the​ exposure youll receive.
Use classified ads. Theyre not just for​ employment offers any more. Youll find classified ads in​ magazines and​ newspapers. Before writing your ad, go to​ your local library, and​ look through the​ back issues of​ the​ magazine or​ newspaper that youre considering. Look at​ the​ ads that catch your eye, or​ that are repeated month after month. Those ads wouldnt be in​ there each month, if​ they werent making the​ advertiser money. Use those ads as​ springboards for​ ideas when youre ready to​ start writing your own classifieds.
Test your ads. Start out with the​ cheaper publications, so you can find out whats working and​ whats not. Play with them, and​ tweak them. Once youve got an ad that works, keep using it. You can run it​ more than once, or​ in​ more than one publication at​ a​ time. When it​ quits bringing in​ customers, or​ you start noticing a​ drop in​ effectiveness, then its time to​ change it.
Do you own a​ retail business? if​ so, check into coop advertising funds that may be offered by your vendors. Coop programs provide joint advertising for​ your and​ your vendor, and​ youll get a​ portion of​ the​ cost of​ the​ ad reimbursed because the​ ad mentions the​ vendor. Note most Coop programs have strict guidelines, so check with your vendors and​ make sure youre following the​ rules.
Barter for​ goods and​ services. This can be especially effective with radio stations and​ local papers. See if​ you can provide your products or​ services in​ trade for​ the​ cost of​ advertising. Also called trade or​ Inkind ads, the​ radio station or​ publication gives you the​ ad in​ exchange for​ products or​ services of​ equal value, and​ then uses those products or​ services as​ part of​ a​ promotion or​ contest for​ their listeners or​ readers. This can also be a​ great way to​ get additional free publicity, so if​ you decide to​ try this method, get creative and​ think outside the​ box!
Reuse your ads in​ other advertising medium. if​ youve got an ad thats especially effective, or​ looks great, reuse it​ in​ a​ circular, brochure, handout, flyer or​ direct mail piece. Use the​ graphics on your Webpages.
Finding a​ healthy mix between online and​ offline advertising, looking for​ ways to​ extend your reach and​ your advertising dollar, and​ cutting costs creatively will help you ensure that your advertising is​ working hard for​ your success.

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